The Campbell River Head Injury Support Society is holding an open house of Linda’s Place in August to celebrate multiple milestones, including the one-year anniversary of the multistory rental complex opening.
Linda’s Place, located at 591 9th Ave., is the non-profit organization’s third project as part of its housing program, providing a 50/50 split of clients and market renters across a mix of suite types. It also features a ground-level office and clinic space to provide medical services for brain injuries that would otherwise be available in only Victoria and Vancouver. A rooftop patio was also built with support by the Daybreak Rotary club.
After construction started in May 2019, Linda’s Place was completed in July 2020. But there was no celebration to mark this achievement, because of the pandemic, explained Shelley Howard, the organization’s executive director.
“It kind of put a damper on the grand opening, because we couldn’t do it,” said Howard. “We had to keep postponing and postponing.”
Now with gatherings happening once again, the organization is holding an open house to showcase the new building on August 19, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event will also mark the organization’s 21st year as a society and 10 years since it has operated Hillcrest House, which features four bachelor suites for clients upstairs and programming space below.
“Because the society now can do some type of celebration with the lifting of the (public health) orders, we thought let’s do a grand opening plus open house,” said Howard. “Let’s just make it a great, big ‘everything in one.’”
After starting in 1994, the Campbell River Head Injury Support Society now helps over 400 people per year who are living with brain injuries resulting from accidents, drug overdoses and medical events. This is done through a range of support groups, classes and services.
The organization continued programming throughout the pandemic, but relied on one-on-one sessions and Zoom at first. But after receiving a grant to install glass dividers in its spaces, numbers at in-person sessions were increased, said Howard. These supports are scheduled to return to full size by September.
In a new development for the organization, Val Kroot (Senior Housing/Program Coordinator) and Sabrina Johnston (Residential Program Coordinator/LPN) will start travelling north to Port Hardy once a week to provide outreach programs with clients there. This will include offering anger management support and efforts to bring awareness about brain injuries.